Maine Judge Lifts Mandatory Quarantine on Ebola Nurse Kaci Hickox

Somebody’s confused
Health • Views: 34,833

I love it when the media publish two completely contradictory reports; in this case, it’s about the state of Maine’s attempt to impose a mandatory quarantine on nurse Kaci Hickox, in which Judge Charles C. LaVerdiere has ruled… something.

The Associated Press says: Judge Rejects Ebola Quarantine for Nurse.

FORT KENT, Maine (AP) — A Maine judge on Friday rejected a bid by state health officials to restrict the movement of nurse Kaci Hickox, who defied a state quarantine for medical workers who have treated Ebola patients.

Judge Charles C. LaVerdiere ruled that Hickox should continue daily monitoring and coordinate travel with state officials so monitoring can continue. But, because she’s not showing symptoms, the judge says she’s not infectious.

But the New York Times says: Maine Judge Orders Ebola Quarantine for Nurse.

FORT KENT, Me. — The State of Maine has issued a court-ordered quarantine, requiring a nurse who treated Ebola patients in West Africa to stay in her hometown, avoid public transit and businesses, and remain at least three feet away from others when outdoors.

The order was signed on Thursday by Judge Charles C. LaVerdiere, the chief judge for the Maine District Courts who serves on courts in Kennebec and Somerset County.

Either these are two completely different takes on the same ruling, or one of them has it really wrong. This is actually funny in a way, but also pretty pathetic when the subject is something this important. Hopefully they’ll get their stories straight soon.

UPDATE at 10/31/14 10:22:38 am by Charles Johnson

CNN adds to the confusion: Maine Judge Orders Quarantine for Nurse Kaci Hickox.

A Maine judge on Friday ruled that state health officials failed to prove the need for an order enforcing an Ebola quarantine for a nurse who defied the quarantine in a tense standoff with state authorities. District Court Chief Judge Charles LaVerdiere ordered nurse Kaci Hickox, who recently returned to the United States after treating Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, to submit to “direct active monitoring,” coordinate travel with public health officials and immediately notify health authorities should symptoms appear. Her attorney, Norman Siegel, called the decision a victory. On Thursday, the judge had ordered stricter limits on Hickox.

So it seems as if the judge ordered a quarantine yesterday, then reversed the decision today. Oh, my aching head. I think the media are giving me Ebola.

UPDATE at 10/31/14 10:35:10 am by Charles Johnson

And now the New York Times has a new report about the reversal: In About-Face, Maine Judge Lifts Ebola Quarantine on Nurse.

FORT KENT, Me. — Less than a day after confining a nurse who treated Ebola victims to her house, a judge in Maine has lifted the quarantine, rejecting arguments by the State of Maine that the measure was necessary to protect the public.

Within an hour of the decision, state troopers who had been parked outside the nurse’s house for days had left.

The order, signed on Friday by Judge Charles C. LaVerdiere, the chief judge for the Maine District Courts who serves in Kennebec and Somerset counties, said the nurse, Kaci Hickox, “currently does not show symptoms of Ebola and is therefore not infectious.”

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